- Associated Press - Friday, July 22, 2016

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - The Latest on the final day of the congressional election signup period (all times local):

4:30 p.m.

The registration period for Louisiana’s Nov. 8 election has ended.

After the three-day qualifying period ended Friday, 24 candidates had signed up to run for the U.S. Senate seat that is open because Republican incumbent David Vitter isn’t running for re-election.

Among the Republican contenders are U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany, U.S. Rep. John Fleming, retired Air Force Col. Rob Maness, state Treasurer John Kennedy and white supremacist David Duke. Democrats include New Orleans lawyer Caroline Fayard, Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell and Lafayette oil and gas businessman Josh Pellerin.

All four incumbent congressmen running for re-election have drawn opponents.

Because Boustany and Fleming are running for the Senate, their open House seats have drawn many candidates. The 3rd District seat representing southwest Louisiana has 12 candidates. The 4th District covering northwest Louisiana has eight contenders.

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3:50 p.m.

Two dozen candidates are in Louisiana’s U.S. Senate race, a lengthier list of contenders than elections officials have seen in the more than three decades of their database.

White supremacist David Duke was a surprise, last-minute entrant into the race Friday.

Also registering for the Nov. 8 ballot was retired Air Force Col. Rob Maness, a Republican who was the third-place finisher in the 2014 Senate competition.

The Secretary of State’s Office says the Senate candidate list has more people on it than any congressional race in its database, which stretches back to 1982.

Among the GOP candidates are U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany, U.S. Rep. John Fleming and state Treasurer John Kennedy. Democrats include New Orleans lawyer Caroline Fayard, Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell and Lafayette oil and gas businessman Josh Pellerin.

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10:15 a.m.

Retired Air Force Col. Rob Maness has become the 22nd candidate to register for Louisiana’s U.S. Senate race.

The Republican, who was the third-place finisher in the 2014 Senate competition, signed up Friday on the final day of the three-day qualifying period, touting his 32 years of military experience. He says America needs a “warrior” in the Senate, describing the world as “on fire” right now.

Maness tried to register for the ballot as “Colonel Rob,” but was denied. Elections officials say the nickname isn’t allowed under Louisiana law.

The candidate registration period ends at 4:30 p.m. The election will be Nov. 8.

The Secretary of State’s Office says the Senate candidate list has more people on it than any congressional race in its database, which stretches back to 1982.

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